Anti-malarial drug able to control asthma: NUS study

Dr Ho (left) and Prof Wong are part of the NUS team which found that the herb-based drug produces fewer side effects when used to treat asthma.
PHOTO: Anti-malarial drug able to control asthma: NUS study

SINGAPORE - A common herbal-based anti-malarial drug could soon be used to control asthma, according to researchers from the National University of Singapore (NUS).

The team discovered that the drug artesunate offers better treatment outcomes than other drugs currently available to asthmatic patients, the university said in a statement yesterday.

The team revealed for the first time that artesunate is able to suppress airway inflammation and produce an array of anti-inflammatory effects similar to those by dexamethasone, the most potent steroid currently available, and with less side effects.

The breakthrough discovery was first published in the journal Metabolomics on July 16.

This article was first published on Aug 1, 2014.
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